Delayed transfer of care days continue to fall

ADASS welcomes delay in DTOC days and beds

Published on 15th February 2019

The number of delayed transfers of care has been further reduced despite winter and funding pressures, the latest figures reveal.

According to NHS England, there were 129,400 total delayed days in December 2018, of which 82,800 were in acute care. This is a decrease from December 2017, where there were 145,000 total delayed days, of which 93,600 were in acute care.

It is also a fall on the previous month's figures as there were 137,400 total delayed days in November 2018, of which 89,500 were in acute care.

The 129,400 total delayed days in December 2018 is equivalent to 4,173 daily DTOC beds which compares to 4,580 in November 2018 and 4,679 in December 2017.

Both the NHS and social care sectors have seen reductions in the volume of delayed transfers of care in the last year. In December 2018, 61.2% of all delays were attributable to the NHS, 30.1% were attributable to social care and the remaining 8.7% were attributable to both NHS and social care.

The main reason for delays in social care in December 2018 was “Patients Awaiting Care Package in their Own Home” which accounted for 13,100 delayed days (33.7% of all social care delays), compared to 17,000 in December 2017.

The number of delays attributable to this reason had been increasing steadily since April 2014 and reached a peak in December 2016. However, delays attributable to this reason have been gradually decreasing since March 2017, although did increase slightly between June and October 2018.

Delayed trandfers of care peaked in October 2016 when there were 200,095 total days delayed and 6,455 DTOC beds.

Julie Ogley, Vice President of the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services, said: “Delayed transfers of care due to social care have fallen again, despite severe funding pressures, and is a tribute to the hard work of those working in social care to achieve this in difficult circumstances.

“However, social care is much more than just reducing pressure on hospitals. It is about supporting people in the community to have greater choice and control over their own lives and independence.

“Social care desperately needs to be fully resourced to enable people to have the support to live good lives, keep care markets stable and improve the working lives of the 1.5 million people working in this vital sector.

“Keeping people well at home and reducing their need to go to hospital in the first place should be the main focus, not just on reducing delayed transfers of care.

“Therefore the government needs to step up and finally provide the urgently needed, long-term funding solution for social care in its much-delayed green paper," Ms Ogley concluded.

DTOC figures

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